Kristen Stewart Cheated With SWATH Director - And Admits It: Will Scandal Hurt Breaking Dawn at the Box Office?

Kristen Stewart Robert Pattinson Rupert Sanders: Scandal

The Twilight world is reeling with the revelation that Kristen Stewart cheated on Robert Pattinson with her Snow White and the Huntsman director Rupert Sanders, confirmed in a public apology issued by Stewart today. Needless to say, people have questions. What was she thinking? What exactly is going on in those car photos? And, more importantly for the billion-dollar franchise sprouted from KStew and RPattz's on- and rumored offscreen love: With The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 approaching theaters this November, having capitalized on Stewart and Pattinson's recent displays of public PDA, how will the box office-boosting faithful react to the news of behind the scenes infidelity and betrayal?

US Weekly's expose on Stewart's affair with the married Sanders (who cast his wife, model Liberty Ross, as Stewart's mother in SWATH) hits newsstands Friday, although damning photographs leaked early prompting Stewart's admission on Wednesday. The steamy snaps of 22-year-old Stewart and her 41-year-old director were taken just days before Stewart made a fan-pleasing appearance at the Teen Choice Awards alongside Pattinson, with whom she reportedly shares a home.

"I'm deeply sorry for the hurt and embarrassment I've caused to those close to me and everyone this has affected," Stewart said in an apology issued today. "This momentary indiscretion has jeopardized the most important thing in my life, the person I love and respect the most, Rob. I love him, I love him, I'm so sorry."

2008's Twilight film rose to popularity on the strength of Stephenie Meyer's book series fanbase, but the chemistry between Stewart and Pattinson gave Summit's franchise-starter an offscreen hook that launched a record-breaking franchise. The heat between the two that sparked in Pattinson's Twilight audition in director Catherine Hardwicke's home became Twilight legend in itself; KStew and RPattz quickly became romantic icons for fans even before rumors swirled that they'd become involved, but in recent years they began to seemingly demonstrate their relationship, if neither officially acknowledged it in the press.

Kristen Stewart Cheated

Above: Kristen Stewart and director Rupert Sanders promoting Snow White and the Huntsman

As their onscreen alter egos went from smitten classmates to wedded couple and beyond through four films, the pair's real life coupling has become increasingly ingrained in the Twilight franchise's popular and financial cache. Even if a relationship has never been officially confirmed, the suggestion of one has helped to propel the $2.4 billion Twilight franchise, not to mention the duo's individual star power as Hollywood's reigning teen idols.

Twilight (2008) $392,616,625 worldwide
The Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009) $709,827,462 worldwide
The Twilight Saga: Eclipse (2010) $698,491,347 worldwide
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1 (2011) $705,058,657 worldwide

Earlier this month at Comic-Con, fans glimpsed footage of Stewart and Pattinson in the series' finale, Breaking Dawn Part 2, which sees them married with a child. As they have at every stop along the way, fans have clamored over the idea of life imitating art, and Stewart's Comic-Con comments embracing motherhood and marriage fed the publicity machine for the November release.

But while the admission of cheating will shatter the illusion for some fans, many have rejected the reports as false, steadfastly supporting their stars ("Robsten is Unbroken" is trending on Twitter among those in denial). As the truth sinks in, will fans revolt? Also admittedly possible, for the skeptics out there: They were never dating to begin with, and this entire affair was staged. A way for Stewart to break out of the confines of her Twilight persona as she looks ahead in her acting career?

In any case, Summit has a pickle ahead of them as they plot the PR campaign for Breaking Dawn, with Stewart, Pattinson, and Sanders sorting out their now very public private matters. While fans of the Twilight characters will surely return to theaters to see the final chapter of Bella and Edward's story play out, the popular fantasy that made their story larger than life has been shattered; add to that the previously announced plans to reunite Stewart and Sanders on a sequel to Universal's $381 million hit Snow White and the Huntsman, and an additional studio's financial future is involved.

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  • Renota Johns says:

    kristen is the biggest bitch. No apology will do. She totally ruin the twilight saga for me.

    • elinarob says:

      twilight saga is not about her, breaking dawn is about edward bellaand while they were shooting this movie they were still together so go and see the movie for robert(i love him!!)and the whole cast

  • Andrew says:

    "The pair's real life coupling has become increasingly ingrained in the Twilight franchise's popular and financial cache."

    Because it's a PR move and not real.

    • Jen Yamato says:

      I dunno, Andrew. I believed it was real. I've heard it was real. In any case, more terrible for Sanders' family than the Twilight fans with crushed fantasies. What a huge mess.

    • Wendy says:

      I agree. Their "relationship" was a PR stunt to keep the Twilight movies in the public eye. This affair, that never happened either, is apparently the way her publicists have set up to end the farce now that they films are wrapping up.

  • Jenna says:

    THis is not true! those lame ass apologies are false Kristen NEVER speaks about her personal life no matter what!!!!!!!! And them photos are photoshopped! And huh funny how they got caught making out yet there is no VIDEO proof. Completely FALSE!

    • CocaineHeart says:

      yeah its really hard for me to believe Stewart would be that quick to acknowledge anything in her personal life since she has refused to do it for so long.... and didn't the statement come from People or something, because that makes it really hard for me to believe these are legit, official statements from a rep.... either way, totes awkward for the marketing they will all be doing.

  • tracemurray says:

    The music world is much worse.

  • max says:

    I enjoy all the Twihards comments here defending KStew, but face the face, ladies: she admitted to cheating. Kissing or otherwise, she cheated. I know it's hard for you to digest, but it's real. She's not the romantic ideal you all hold so sacred.

  • MaryAnn says:

    Seems to me that she should have just skipped the apology and remained private. The publicity over her admission has brought the cheating to the attention to a lot more people than the initial news release that it happened.

  • kym says:

    The cat is out of the bag! She really cheated him! I'm still thinking why she is alive?... how can she be so shameless to date a guy who is + half of her age and cheat a guy! She's a sensless B!tch!

  • Mealy says:

    i fuckin hate the bitch, she's a shit actor too! can only pull one dull face! wtf is wrong wiv her? who would cheat on rob, especially with a married 41 year old father??!!!

  • Fatma.. says:

    I think this is all a trick from rob & kristen !! To attrack people for their new movie ..!! Unbelievable

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